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From Pastor Kent’s Desk

The other day, I was thinking about the number of services of worship I’ve attended on Sunday mornings since I was confirmed in 1956. I added it up, and I’ve attended at least 2,976 services of worship since 1956. That’s a staggering number! And, if you add in all the special services I’ve attended, weddings, funerals, and Presbytery meetings, etc., it would be another two or three hundred more. Wow! That’s amazing when you think about it! That’s a lot of time spent in church. I’m sure there are many of you in the congregation who can match those numbers. The question becomes, why have we spent so much time in church? What’s the draw? For me, the obvious answer is that it’s my job. But like you, I go for a variety of reasons: the music, the hymns, the community/fellowship, the sermons, and the celebration of the sacraments. More important, worship nourishes me, enlivens me, enriches me, and nudges me. It is in the context of worship that I am put in touch with the Divine, the God who names me and claims me and promises to be with me throughout all my days. At my confirmation, I promised, in front of God and the congregation of Wilshire Crest Presbyterian Church, that I would be a faithful member of Christ’s church. I promised to share the Gospel wherever I went and continue to grow in the faith throughout my life. At our confirmation, we received a little book by The Rev. Hugh T. Kerr, who was for many years pastor of Shadyside Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh. The book was published by the Board of Christian Education of the PCUSA in 1920. The language was true when we received our copies in 1956, and its message is still applicable today. Dr. Kerr is writing about loyalty to Christ’s church and he ends by saying:
“It is my church. It needs me. It needs my service
more than it needs my money. I should not think of
allowing my family to miss me at my own table, without
explanation; neither will I allow my church to
miss me unexcused from my appointed place. The
church cannot live and thrive and hold up its head if
the people neglect the appointed services for worship.
To absent myself from my church is to prove a traitor
to my own trust and to strike the church I love the
most unkind blow I can strike.”
His powerful words have stuck with me. They aren’t trendy by 21st century standards, but they still strike a chord none-the-less. I trust they do for you, too. May we continue to be faithful to Christ’s church all our days.
From Pastor Kent’s Desk
Grace & Peace, Kent

Fall Basement Sale Saturday, October 27 – 8am-12pm

It’s not too late to donate to our Fall basement sale. The Women’s Association members have been diligently working to make this their best sale ever. Quality clothing, household goods, and collectibles will all be fairly priced. Delicious food, including pork barbecue at $6 lb. (bring own containers), hot dogs, snacks, and a bake sale will be available. Something for everyone! Large paper bags are needed. Please see Pat Rineer to volunteer and/or to donate items.

World Communion Sunday

World Communion Sunday is a celebration observed by several Christian denominations, taking place on the first Sunday of every October, that promotes Christian unity and ecumenical cooperation. It focuses on an observance of the eucharist. The tradition was begun in 1933 by Hugh Thomson Kerr who ministered in the Shadyside Presbyterian Church.
According to the Presbyterian Outlook: Davitt S. Bell (the late Clerk of Session and church historian at Shadyside) recalled that Dr. Kerr first conceived the notion of World Communion Sunday during his year as moderator of the General Assembly (1930). Dr. Kerr’s younger son, the Rev. Dr. Donald Craig Kerr, who is pastor emeritus of the Roland Park Presbyterian Church in Baltimore, was sixteen in 1933. He has related that World Communion Sunday grew out of the Division of Stewardship at Shadyside. It was their attempt to bring churches together in a service of Christian unity—in which everyone might receive both inspiration and information, and above all, to know how important the Church of Jesus Christ is, and how each congregation is interconnected one with another.
It was then was adopted throughout the US Presbyterian Church in 1936 and subsequently spread to other denominations. In 1940, the Federal Council of Churches (now the National Council of Churches), led by Jesse Moren Bader, endorsed World Communion Sunday and began to promote it to Christian churches worldwide.